3 Vote

Well, I've eaten rattlesnake (just like the breast of chicken), but maybe the most exotic is zapote negro, an ugly fruit the size and shape of its distant cousin, the beautiful persimmon.

When I first saw it in a market in Pátzcuaro, Michoacán, its wrinkled skin and purplish black, slimy looking pulp repelled me. "What's that ugly thing?" I asked a Mexican friend who's a retired chef. "You'll see," she said, as she picked out a dozen of the ugliest ones.

I saw later when she served zapote negro for desert. She'd scooped out the pulp, pressed it through a colander to remove the seeds, added fresh lime and orange juice, and served it chilled and topped with whipped cream and a dash of cinnamon. It was scrumptious.

What's your pick?

  • Posted Dec 18, 2009
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22 Answers

4 Vote

The most exotic food I've eaten was bird's nest soup. It's a Chinese delicacy. The bird's nest is actually a bird's nest made by a cave dwelling bird that uses their spit to make the nest.

  • ahhh, that's disgusting. - hlsbookworm Dec 18, 2009 flag
  • ay dios mio, you win - 003487d6 Dec 18, 2009 flag
  • It was actually very delicious and I wouldn't hesitate to order it again. Honey is bee barf and many people like that! - aloshek Dec 18, 2009 flag
  • I always wanted to try that. - billy-jones Dec 19, 2009 flag
2 Vote

I've eaten a lot of "exotic" things. My BIL belongs to a Wild Game group and they have a cook-off every year. One year alone I ate a bunch of interesting stuff:

  • Rattle Snake
  • Opposum
  • Goose
  • Raccoon
  • Duck

My Father hunts a lot so I've also eaten a lot of regular game:

  • Elk
  • Deer
  • Antelope
  • Pheasant
  • Quail

I've travelled a bit in the southern United States and eaten a few unusual things:

  • Turtle
  • Aligator
  • Crawfish

But the most unusual thing I've probably ever eaten is Ostrich Jerky.

  • My mom cooked a possum once. And only once. The odor drove us all out of the house. - 0057ed01 Dec 18, 2009 flag
2 Vote

Well, jokingly aside- one thing which would interest me are Taiwanese rooster balls. Some people say that you get a melt in the mouth type of sensation.......I'm not sure.

  • was the double entendre intended? - nizhoni1 Dec 18, 2009 flag
2 Vote


2 Vote

Chicken hearts...not very exotic. I mean, they are pretty good...I ate them in Brazil. Pretty salty. It's the texture that is not so great. It's rubbery. Go figure; it is a muscle that is constantly worked out. :D

2 Vote

Definitely it was dog. In South Korea, they serve it in certain places and it is called Bo-shin-tang (I think). It was stranger to see it for sale in meat markets. There would be half a dog, sitting next to a place selling beef and chicken. Tasted OK.

In Vietnam I ate porcupine which I had never considered an edible animal. That one was pretty good.

Oh, I almost forgot duck embryo (still in the egg - popular in Philippines, I think). That was in Vietnam, but we can get them in Houston at the Asian markets.

2 Vote

I had a baby octopus. Yuck! It was gross, first of all, it was cold, thankfully it was cooked, but it was all rubbery and tasted like something similar to plastic.

  • That means they over cooked it. Anytime seafood is rubbery, it was cooked for too long. It is a very common culinary error. - Lasairfiona Dec 18, 2009 flag
  • I had octopus sushi recently. I would have preferred the rubbery, over-cooked one you had, I think. Slimey, slimey, slimey! - aloshek Dec 18, 2009 flag
  • haha, yes, It definitely would've been worse if it was slimy!! - hlsbookworm Dec 18, 2009 flag
  • Yes, I forgot canned baby octopus. they taste like rubber soak in sardine oil. :-) - billy-jones Dec 19, 2009 flag
  • edit-"soaked" not "soak" Someday I'll learn to type, lol. - billy-jones Dec 19, 2009 flag
2 Vote

In Greece..

lamp brains!

2 Vote

¡Oye, qué buenocito, llego a contar un otra historia! Llamo a esto una "La Noche Me Comí Sopa de Especies Amenazada."

  • (Oh goody, I get to tell another story! I call this one "The Night I Ate Endangered Species Soup.".)

Comments and corrections are welcome.

  • Yo estaba con un guía, Skully, en los Snake Keys en el Caribe sur de Belice durante dos días. Salimos de los Snake Keys de la secunda noche alrededor de las 9:00 y llegamos a la playa de la parte a las 10:00.
    Había un groupo de nativos que Skully conocía. Fuemos adónde a visitar y Skully me presentó y nos invitaron a comer con ellos.

  • Allí en el fuego llameante bajo era una cáscara de tortuga grande con un liquido caliente cociando en su interior. Pedí lo que cocinando.

  • "Sopa de tortuga verde." replicó uno de los locales. "¡Oye!" Pensé a me mismo. Las tortugas verde son una especie amenazada (supuestamente).

  • Así ya era demasiado tarde para esta tortuga verde. Una media hora luego yo estaba comiendo sopa de tortuga verde con arroz en la playa en el sur de Belice, ¿qué más pueda cualquier persona desea.

  • La sopa era absolutamente maravillosa, tuve un segundo tazón de sopa.

  • Así que ahora cuando cuento esta historia me gusta referirse a ella como "La Noche Me Comí Sopa de Especies Amenazada."

  • I was with a guide, Skully, on the Snake Keys in the Caribbean of southern Belize for two days. We left the Snake Keys the second evening around 9:00 and got to the mainland beach at 10:00. There were a group of locals at a fire who Skully knew. We went over to visit and Skully introduced me and they invited us to eat with them.

  • There on the low flaming fire was a large turtle shell with a hot liquid cooking inside. I asked what was cooking.

  • "Green Turtle Soup." replied one of the locals. "Wow!" I thought to myself. Green Turtles are a endangered species (supposedly).

  • Well it was too late now for this Green Turtle. A half hour later I was eating Green Turtle soup with rice on the beach in southern Belize, what more could anyone want. The soup was absolutely wonderful, I had a second bowl of soup.

  • So now when I tell this story I like to refer to it as "The Night I Ate Endangered Species Soup."

2 Vote

I had quail eggs with raw potato juice and half cooked alligator eggs

2 Vote

Sea urchin - I won't eat it again! Both the flavor and texture were nasty.

2 Vote

Maybe the sea urchin I had was poorly prepared. It was at a Japanese restaurant in the US. It was very mushy and had an unpleasant cloying taste.

For me slimy/mushy are textures not tastes. After all, even your basic "spaghetti con olio di olivo" can bee considered "slimy" . I remember seeing a great-uncle eating raw oysters (Chesapeake Bay and quite fresh) in my youth and thinking "How disgusting!". I eventually recovered from the trauma and learned that raw oysters (although slimy, are delicious).

The uni in Japan incident happened during my first real visit there (as opposed to changing planes) while I was with a group of Americans on a "educational" tour. Together with two other members of the group, I found a little "hole-in-the-wall" sushi shop (it could have accommodated about 12 customers). In Japan, this sort of "neighborhood" shop is quite common. The owner (once he recovered from the shock of having three foreigners at his counter), became quite friendly (I had been studying Japanese for several years and one of my companions has spent a number of years as a child in Japan and retained some Japanese as a result) so language was a problem but not a "show-stopper". After we had ordered (and consumed) a number of the "popular" dishes, he offered uni ("on the house"). In a sense, it was your "basic" uni but he had added some (unknown to me) seasoning/sauce and it was delicious.

A, perhaps relevant, consideration with sushi is the quality of the connection between the (retail) shop and the fish/seafood wholesaler. In Spanish , I would say "tiene que tener enchufe" (he needs to be connected). One needs the right connections in order to obtain the best/freshest selections. I have had uni on a number of later occasions in the U.S. but they did not measure up to my experience in Japan.

Samdie -- you sound like me I love that kind of stuff especially from the sea. Eel is also really good. In Mexico I often have octopus omlete for breakfast -- Mmm!

I do indeed love that kind of stuff. Thanks to Japanese sushi, I have learned that I like both sea eels and river eels (there was a time when I didn't know that there was more than one kind [there was also a time when I thought that they looked disgusting and didn't want to eat them but, thankfully, I recovered from that foolishness]). For me, the most vivid memory of the time that I spent in Sevilla during la Semana Santa is the "calamares fritos" that the street vendors offered.

  • I have caught river eels, stuffed them, and baked them. After they are cooked you take off the skin and chow down. I have caught and eaten sea eels in Mexico on a Mexican hand fishing rig from the rocks on shore (a bottle with fishing line wound it.) - Daniel Dec 18, 2009 flag
  • Hey Samidie -- Do I have any correction to my story? - Daniel Dec 18, 2009 flag
2 Vote

I ate bat wings several times in Mexico. It actally was really good. I was lightly oiled and it tasted like venison meat. I usually don't like meats, but I absolutely loved it. Much to my friends dismay as they were entirely disgusted by the idea of eating bat wings, I went back for more. Now, each time I travel to Mexico, I always have to visit my friends who make the bat wings for me.

Also, this year in my Spanish class, I got to try dried grasshoppers. I was really freaked out about eating a bug, but my Spanish teacher told the class that the first girl and first boy to eat 5 dried grasshoppers got 100 extra credit points. I always strive to have good grades in my classes, so I jumped at the opportunity. I just ate them one by one, really quickly. They had a kind of citrus like flavor, and they were really crunchy. I quickly decided they tasted like sunflower seeds, and then I didn't have a problem finishing them. I wouldn't say I loved them, but I wouldn't hesitate to eat them again if they were offered to me.

These probably aren't considered exotic to many of you, but I think these are the weirdest things I have ever eaten.

2 Vote

I also forgot fried squirrel brains, they are delicious !!!!!!!!!! The whole head is good: eyes, tounge, etc. Fried pig snout's are great too !!!!!! Pig brains and eggs are very good also. Beef tripe is good fried.

1 Vote

whale raw & grilled - in Japan (very good) sea urchin raw - in Japan (also very good) raw, fresh killed squid (still pulsating) - in Japan (best squid I've ever had) horse meat - in France (very good) alligator - in the U.S. (good but not great)

  • Samdie -- you sound like me I love that kind of stuff especially from the sea. Eel is also really good. In Mexico I often have octopus omlete for breakfast -- Mmm! - Daniel Dec 18, 2009 flag
  • Maybe the sea urchin I had was poorly prepared. It was at a Japanese restaurant in the US. It was very mushy and had an unpleasant cloying taste. - LaBurra Dec 18, 2009 flag
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